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♪ every mom needs a little helper. that's why i got a subaru. announcer: love. it's what makes a subaru, a subaru. good morning from new york. i'm sam seder in for chris hayes. a wisconsin judge has struck down part of scott walker's law. the ruling is expected to be appealed and in his weekly address this morning president obama said that ambassador chris stevens died a hero in two
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countries. more on the latest in the middle east in just a moment. right now i'm joined by heather hurlburt, executive director of the national security network and former speech writer for president bill clinton. re reza asian. phyllis bennis who directs the new barrier nationalism project at the institute for policy studies and zainab salbi founder of women for women international. it assists women survivors of war. the taliban are claiming responsibility for an attack on a british military base in afghanistan this morning that killed two u.s. marines. unlike previous attacks, this time the taliban says it was in response to the same anti-muslim film that set off a swell of violent protests in other parts of the region. libya, egypt, morocco, pakistan, algeria, kuwait, india, iraq
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just to name a few. in tunisia yesterday protesters breached the wall of the u.s. embassy where two people have died and 29 others have been hurt. in sudan, meanwhile, demonstrators got both the u.s. and german embassies and managed to set fire to the latter. a 14-minute video on youtube called "the innocence of muslims." nbc news has decided not to show any images from the film. the man behind the film, an egyptian born christian koptic was taken into custody earlier this morning and questioned by federal authorities reportedly about whether his involvement in this film may have violated terms of his probation. on thursday secretary of state tried to tamp down the religious outrage by denouncing the film. >> let me state very clearly, and i hope it is obvious, that the united states government had absolutely nothing to do with this video.
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to us, to me personally, this video is disgusting and reprehensible. it appears to have a deeply cynical purpose, to denigrate a great religion and to provoke rage. >> the film was initially to have thought to have provoked the attack on benghazi, libya, tuesday. ambassador chris stevens, former navy s.e.a.l.s chris woods and glen doherty were killed in that attack along with sean smith. not long after the attack reports surfaced that it might have been the premeditated work of a radical islamic group retaliating for an american drone strike which had killed an al qaeda command leader. libyan officials said they had taken four men into custody in connection with the attack. they also said they thought the attack was meant to drive a wedge between americans and libyans. this may be true. but even with all that has
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happened in libya, the bigger challenge for the obama administration may be with what's taking place in egypt. where even before the attack on the u.s. consulate in libya protestors stormed the embassy in cairo and tore down the american flag. egyptian president muhammad morsi did not issue a statement until 24 hours afterwards. although he condemned the attack, he condemned the anti-muslim film. he even asked president obama to, quote, put an end to such behavior. president morsi's initial failure to come out with a strong statement to protect the u.s. embassy which he has since done did not sit well with the white house. here's president obama speaking with telemundo on monday. >> would you consider the current egyptian regime an ally of the united states? >> i don't think that we would consider them an ally, but we don't consider them an enemy. they are a new government that is trying to find its way. >> okay. so let's talk about this.
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reza, let's start with you. get us a sense, do you think this is simply a function of this film? what we're seeing in a general sense across the globe in many respects? >> i think certainly the film is a pretexts for a lot of this violence, but what we're seeing is a result of a lot of internal politics in these different countries. i'm so glad that you took the time to separate egypt from libya, from tunisia and sudan. these are very different situations. egypt especially, this film was never seen by anybody online. the first time any egyptian saw any part of this film or even heard about it was when a saudi owned news service called al nos saw clips and talked about it. that's the salafi voice in egyptian politics. the salafi party, especially el nour that have been trying to attack the muslim brotherhood from the right, from the far more conservative position, saw
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this as a perfect opportunity to put them in an uncomfortable position, to either come out and denounce this film and give the upper hand to the salafi parties or appear to be sort of, you know, waffling and perhaps maybe even denigrating the prophet themselves. it was a perfect opportunity for them to take advantage of this political vacuum taking place there. so i know it's difficult for americans to understand this, but there is actually internal politics taking place here. >> right. and, i mean, is it your sense -- i mean, heather, is it your sense that that's what we're seeing when we see these protests around the globe or is there some measure of copy cat? what explains the fact that, you know, i imagine each country has their own domestic politics. >> as reza said, there's something different going on in every country, and egypt is and has been for a long time a real leader in the muslim world. so if egypt sneezes the muslim world catches cold.
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what you saw yesterday was something that started in egypt and then something in libya which seems to have been largely driven by other forces connected to al qaeda. and then other groups around the world for their own internal reasons seizing on this. yemen, just to take one example, it looks like frightening protest scenes there yesterday were actually because the security forces commander is connected to the old government is losing power, doesn't like it, and deliberately allowed the american embassy to be stormed as part of his fight with his own government. so that's just one more example of how a pretexts then enlivens whatever internal power struggle you have going on. >> i would imagine we also have -- i mean, there's a whole raft of complaints that, i mean, i think people in general may use this as a pretexts even if it's not something that is ginned up by the political forces, but there's a lot of frustration in parts of the world. >> well, i mean, for me it reminds me once in iraq right
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after the american invasion. iraqis would walk up to the street. when they discovered i'm half iraqi, half american. they would tell me please tell the american forces, american troops not to wear so much clothes. americans have usually 50 pounds worth of clothing because it's really hot in iraq and if you are that hot, you will snap at us. and we can't afford anybody to snap at us. we are already traumatized people. and i feel this is very much the same thing. you have to understand the emotional background beside the political aspect of it. you are dealing with trauma advertised people who have gone through a lot of changes recently but eras of dictatorship and frustration. this is not justified but to explain. but then someone comes and poke at you and that film is a very provocative film, very insulting. even to the moderate taste it's a very, very cheap attack at someone for the most secular in islam they respect the prophet
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muhammad. we are not supposed to show his face. there is a respect you do not violate even with the most secular groups of islam. it's a very provocative way of poking at someone who is traumatized. and we have to understand that emotional thing. when that happens it does not mean the whole population is like that. when a riot happens in america, we do not think, none of us think that all of this is america. this happens with perhaps if i am too psych logic terms, with the most traumatized extremists who are waiting for anything to then explode and we have to put it in that context in order to be responsible of how we respond. and all of us need to be responsible, america as much as the arab world. you know, those who are moderate and seeing it from our side, okay, this is someone spoking and saying, you're bad, you're bad, you're bad until you explode so we have to put it in that context. i think that's absolutely right, but i also think it's very important for us in the
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u.s. to pull back from this and recognize, this isn't about us. you know, there was a headline this morning on one of the networks saying, is the arab spring turning to winter? and i'm thinking, you know, the arab spring has been wintery for people in the midst of the spring since it began. you know, people are being killed in these protests that we're not hearing about. there were two people killed in sudan at least yesterday. three people were killed in tunisia. now we're not hearing about them. we're hearing about this only in the context of the killing of u.s. diplomats, which is unfortunate, of course. it's a tragedy. but we should be clear that this isn't about the united states. it's partly in reaction to u.s. policy. if we look at egypt, and i absolutely agree that egypt is the center piece here in many ways, the notion that we're hearing from some in washington. how could this be? these were people that were supported by the united states. in libya, benghazi was the city
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that we liberated. not everyone in benghazi and libya felt they were being liberated by the nato bombing. we can't pretend it's all about us. >> although i think it's really important especially in the case of libya to note that the day after the attacks there were thousands of libyans in the streets carrying signs that said, sorry, america. >> we're going to speak to -- we're going to take a break and speak to a couple correspondents on the ground in egypt and in libya when we return. we'll be right back after this. . when you lost the thing you can't believe you lost. when what you just bought, just broke. or when you have a little trouble a long way from home... as an american express cardmember you can expect some help. but what you might not expect, is you can get all this with a prepaid card. spends like cash. feels like membership.
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. we're talking about the rash of protests across the middle east including the one where four americans were killed at the u.s. consulate in benghazi, libya. we're in benghazi and we have
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this report this morning. >> reporter: good morning, sam. we understand that a team of fbi agents has arrived in benghazi and they have begun their investigation to try to determine who was responsible for the attack on the u.s. consulate that killed ambassador stevens and three other americans. we know that they will be sifting through the rubble and ashes at the u.s. consulate and identifying individuals who may have played a role in that assault. we also understand that u.s. intelligence agent sits have deployed their assets across the country to try to pick up any intelligence that can help in that search. all indications right now according to libyan officials is this is a pre-planned attack. they have identified a few individuals. four are in custody of the libyan government. they believe these individuals may have some information that may be of value as to who is responsible for the attack. they also say they have several others under the libyan government surveillance. right now though all fingers are pointing to at least one militant group here that is closely affiliated with or at
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least inspired by al qaeda. that group though denies it played a role in the assault. there's no doubt though in the coming days we expect the investigation to intensify. libyan authorities say they want to do everything in their power to help the americans identify these individuals and bring the perpetrators to justice. back to you, sam. >> nbc news foreign correspondent ayman mulhadine reporting from libya. jim is with us. jim, where do things stand in cairo now? >> reporter: hi, sam. in cairo things are looking almost back to normal after four days of that standoff. president morsi gave the order to security police early this morning to clear not just the road to the embassy but the whole of the tahrir square that's the very symbol of the revolution down below me. there were probably 200, a little bit more, arrested,
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protesters who tried yet again last night and overnight to breach that u.s. embassy here. so it's looking like morsi is getting the message from president obama and striking the balance between having to appeal to his own conservative sometimes ultra conservative constituency and appealing as well to the international community and major donors, not the least of which the united states. but, still, if things are getting better here, there was a spasm of international protest and violence across some 20 countries from morocco to gentlem jacarda. there were protests by young muslim groups that were trying to attack u.s. embassies or u.s. symbols of power. sometimes they breached embassy walls and put up islamic flags. burned american flags. even in turkey, sam, nato ally
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and close friend we saw pictures of u.s. flags being burned. in all, seven individuals were killed in that 24-hour spasm of reaction to the film with world leaders today scratching their heads wondering if this is ever going to peter out. back to you. >> jim, just give me a sense. what were the size of the protests in cairo? i mean, were these -- give us some context. we see maps in this country where we just -- each protest is denoted by a little flash point. give us a sense of the scope of it. >> okay. well, we seemed to have lost connection with jim maceda. thanks so much. thanks for joining us this morning. so let's talk about this idea of -- we had touched upon this as we broke. to what extent are we in the
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united states and perhaps even in the media overreacting to what is happening across -- i mean, obviously i'm not talking about the deaths and the killings of four of our personnel in libya, but i'm talking looking at these maps with these flashpoints and in fact if there was not this sort of predicate of this movie, would we even be discussing these type of protests? >> you know what's even i think a more significant question is if the four u.s. diplomats had not been killed, diplomats and security people, if they had not been killed, would we be talking about the opposition to the film? there's a way in which everything we see in the middle east is seen through u.s. eyes. i think that's a huge problem. i think it's part of the problem of why our policies haven't worked, because we see it in the context of is morsi doing the right thing, meaning is he doing what we want him to do? is he responding to president
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obama's pressure on what he should do relative to the security question in his country, which is his country, not our country. we are the largest donor, that's true, based on the camp david agreements. we give the egyptian military, we should be clear, $1.3 billion a year. we only give $250 million a year to the egyptian government. so we're supporting the military there. we're taking sides. and yet we're saying to president morsi, we're going to make judgments about you based on whether you do what we say. and i think that's very problematic because it shapes a narrative in this country that sort of says, everything in the middle east is shaped by our values, as we put it, our ideas, our strategic goals in the region, our definitions of stability, our definitions of rights. even on the question of individual rights versus communal and religious rights there are very different assessments in different
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countries. we don't take that seriously. >> but i think we can all agree, too, that both countries have a certain responsibility to try and mitigate the impact of this. >> absolutely. >> clearly this film was made with the express purposes of creating this type of response. >> absolutely. >> this is not someone went out there to make a blockbuster film by any stretch of the imagination. >> no. and to your specific question, i mean, the bbc counted about 500 protesters at the u.s. embassy yesterday, 500, in a country of 84 million. and sort of the media narrative, which i understand because we need to simplify things, we need to give it out in these little bite size pieces that people can understand and people can absorb, but the media that i can this is a muslim revolt or middle eastern revolt i think really brushes past the incredible complexities that if we don't pay attention to are kind of dangerous to our security needs. not just the libya issue obviously which now we have to
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recognize that this was a well-planned al qaeda attack which is a far more grave issue, obviously, than just a protest of muslims. >> well, when we come back we're going to be joined by ether el-katatney. she'll be talking to us live from egypt. hey. hey eddie. i brought your stuff. you don't have to do this. yes i do. i want you to keep this. it'd be weird. take care. you too. [ sighs ]
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so we're talking about the reaction i guess ostensibly to a film, or at least the film became a catalyst for in some ways it functioning a different way i think in each country in which there are protests and for different parties. i want to bring in ethar el-katatney. she is an author of "40 days and 40 nights" in yemen. she joining us in cairo via skype. thanks for joining us. >> thanks for having me. >> so, ethar, give us your
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perspective of what's taking place in egypt now. we just heard from jim maceda that things are starting to quiet down. is that your sense? >> yeah, definitely. it's been an interesting four days and it's very much a flashback or sequel to 2006 when we had the cartokhartoun crisis. the biggest difference is when you look at the fact that prophet muhammad is very secular when it comes to it. you try to analyze what's been happening, and what we see is you have this large number of angry egyptians. they're unemployed. they're alienated. they feel radicalized. they have a lot of pent up resentment and a lot of misplaced public anger. the protests that started out, they were small. they got out of hand. our media here, i've been listening to your conversation, has done very much what it was done before january 20th revolution, which is trying to funnel public anger into a
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channel or to focus on an issue so they don't listen or listen to what's actually happening on the ground. if you read our media it's very much this american israeli conspiracy. i've heard people say this movie was funded by jews and it has hundreds of donors. the reaction from the people is what snowballed. and you have so many different groups and everyone has their own agenda. if we look back to mubarak's time when we had the khartoun crisis, it was framed, media framed the issue as, look, why we need to be strict on the muslim brotherhood. if we don't, this is their reaction. it's very strange to see that post the arab spring or post our revolution, that the muslim brotherhood called for protests yesterday which seemed to provoke the flames even more and at the same time the media on
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your end has also been painting it as this huge event when i don't think that actually a lot of egyptians, they're going on their normal lives. very, very small concentrated, the protests they were. they protested to the interior ministry. you've had kind of revolutionaries against security forces, whether it's salafi followers, and then very small, islamists against the u.s. administration. it definitely requires deeper analysis to what's been going on. >> phyllis, go ahead. >> ethar, this is phyllis bennis. i'm curious if you are seeing on the ground a sense that some, most, many of the protesters are really out there expressing anger and unhappiness about the trajectory of the revolutionary process that began in january of this year -- of last year? is it something that is a sense that it hasn't moved fast enough
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to provide jobs and bread or is it something that's more at the ideological level? do you have a sense if there's a majority view among the protestors? >> the protesters are very fragmented. this is the thing. if you asked me what's actually going on in the country or anyone really what's going on at this particular moment, you will hear dozens of different interpretations because so much is happening all the time. and the only kind of consensus among the egyptians is this kind of confusion, is this kind of our economy, our foreign policy, what the president is doing, what happened to the military. okay, what about our salaries? what about our day-to-day existence? there's a sense of deep frustration because a lot of egyptians see that really nothing has changed. if you go down and talk to the streets, what people will tell you was that a gram of tomatoes costs the equivalent of $1. prices have increased. this kind of political playing or the games that are playing on
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top, the average egyptian doesn't really care what's happening. and in my personal opinion i would actually call the majority of the people who protested, they're not protesting about the movie which none of them have actually seen and it's horrible, by the way, and insulting, but they haven't seen it. they are using it as an outlet for their frustration. the media is helping provoke these flames. this movie doesn't come out. it's not not springing out of a vacuum. it preaches a hatred of the islamic faith. this idea that islam, not the extremist interpretation of islam, but that the religion itself is an existential threat to islam and the west is a belief that binds together this transactional anti-islam movement and it's not new. this movie doesn't definitely seek to increase tensions, but the way the movie was framed or used in egypt and in other countries was not so much about look at how they've presented
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the prophet but, oh, let's direct your anger into a way that will amplify it and manufacture this outrage which snow balls. and everyone has their own agenda. i would call actually some of islamists here using it, you know, to see how we are the defenders of the faith and we are the one which essentially we're using violence to show that our religion is not violent. on the u.s. side, you know, you'll hear analysts or people talking. they will tell you, i read romney's statement after -- i mean the u.s. embassy. >> ethar, we're going to -- if you can hold with us through the break, we're going to take a break. we're going to come back and we want to hear about your interpretation of what mitt romney's response was and i think heather has a question for you as well. appreciate it. we'll see new just a moment. in america today we're running out of a vital resource we need
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what should we be talking about in terms of what happens next with reform in egypt? >> i think we've lost the connection for now. that's a great question, at least in terms of from our perspective or from i guess from our perspective, is there anything that the president could have done differently in this situation? i mean, in terms of either engaging or disengaging, in terms of giving some space for this to take place and having some measure of understanding, give me your -- >> i actually think president obama's doing a pretty fine job
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dealing with this mess as it is. i think a lot of people in the united states criticized him for that shot across the bow for mohammed morsi saying egypt is neither an ally nor an enemy. that was very deliberately done. i thought it was well done too and the response of mohammed morsi was almost immediate. we have to understand that a politician is a politician whether he's in d.c. or cairo. mohammed morsi has a lot of political pressures coming at him from all sides. he has his constituents, secularists and military. this important relationship also with the united states. so he's in this delicate balance, you know, trying to please everyone. but i think that obama's comment was a reminder to him that without american support, whether to the military or to the actual democratic institutions that we're hoping to try to build there, that he doesn't really have a chance. and it worked. i thought it really did work. >> but i think there's a big
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difference. i don't think it's fair to say whether it's to the military or to the democratic institutions. i think there's a huge impact when you see 1.3, actually the latest report is $1.5 billion going directly to the military where the elected government that we claim to support, we claim we want democracy, but there is an elected government. they have no control over that money. and all they get is 1/4 of a billion dollars. that says something about our priorities. >> it says our priorities are to israel. >> exactly. >> the only reason we give the $1.3 billion is because of the camp david agreement. >> but the impact on people in egypt is that the military gets the money and we don't. >> and that's the real discussion. it's not whether -- the president did make the right statement, it's the discussion in the house and other political system in america, but american's aid to the middle
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east. we have no choice. this is an important part of the world that has a huge influence in the world. we have a chance to stabilize it and contribute to its stabilization or complete withdrawal of it and say we have nothing. but to immediately go to the withdraw aid and bring aid. withdraw aid and bring aid, would he have to really make a very conscious decision. it's in america's best interest to stabilize the economic stability and growth of the middle east and -- or leave it alone. but to support the military is dysfunction dysfunctional, destructive aid. it's okay not to have it. c. will' engage in a different dialogue and create a different narrative. that's what american politics is responsible for actually. we're stuck in clashes of civilization that needs to change in order for more positive outcomes. >> we're also stuck on this question of aiding militaries. this question of the link between the aid to egypt and the u.s. aid to israel, which is, of
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course, the 23rd wealthiest country in the world and yet we give it 25% of our entire foreign aid budget for reasons that have everything to do with israel's definitions of military security. israel, of course, being the only nuclear weapon state in the middle east. >> i want to get back to this clash of civilizations. in some ways the clash of civilizations overlays a dynamic that i think is a classic dynamic. whether it's classic, whether it's cass stroh saying that america is going to invade it, it always behooves in many instances leaders to create an outside enemy, right? to ginn up domestic support, whether they put it in this context of a clash of civilizations. >> so, sam, this debate is not about egypt and it's no about aiding egypt. we make a mistake if we say, well, the real problem is that we're not talking about aiding egypt. the real problem is the domestic political dynamic in the united states that makes it possible to have the conversation that you two are calling for.
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and so you have to go back to, you know, what is the reason that it's so useful for one political party to raise bait and muslim bait around these issues and why is that the conversation that we have to have before we can ever get to having a conversation -- i would not cut off aid to the egyptian military tomorrow. i think that would be a huge mistake. i think the best you can do is to gradually reorient over time. even that's not possible unless you focus squarely on domestic politics. >> indeed. let's take that focus. women for women international, thank you for joining us, zainab salbi. we'll turn to who's calling the policy shots for mitt romney when we get back. why not use all your vacation days this year? get points you can easily redeem for your vacations, with chase sapphire preferred.
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get two times the points on dining in restaurants with chase sapphire preferred. ♪ ♪ ♪ mitt romney and paul ryan's first response to the attacks in egypt and libya was to claim that the obama administration had sympathized with the
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attackers. >> the embassy of the united states issued what appeared to be an apology for american principles. >> i want to be clear, it is never too early for the united states to condemn attacks on americans, on our properties, and to defend our values. >> but romney's tone softened considerably. he sounded remarkably similar to the embassy statement he had criticized when he discussed the film in an interview with abc news on thursday. >> it's dispiriting sometimes to see some of the awful things people say and the idea of using something that some people consider sacred and then para parading that at them in a negative way is simply inappropriate and wrong. >> if romney was trying to take the high road, his advisors did not. richard william son told the washington post that, quote, there he is a pretty compelling story that if you had a president romney you'd be in a
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different situation. which gets us to the central question at hand, what would the united states foreign policy look like under a romney administration? joining me now is eli lake, senior national security reporter for "newsweek" and ""the daily beast." eli, let's start with you. give me your sense of how president obama handled the past couple of days. >> well, when you have a statement from an embassy that's under attack, that's not necessarily the same as a statement from the white house that's been approved by the president. but in some ways it is very much part of a continuity of responses since what we call the 9/11 era from top republicans and democrats that have acknowledged in these tense moments, whether it's the khartoun crisis, my magazine had a crisis about korans being flushed down the toilet, it's been used as a pretexts for riots of enthusiasts of political islam.
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i think that there is a sense, and i don't know that this is a republican or conservative idea, that there's something untoward about having high government officials in some ways legitimating the grievances of fanatics. that is something that has been in my view no one would defend this movie and no one should defend this movie. it's not about that. the issue is is that are u.s. officials, u.s. policy allowing for an extreme, violent, fanatic fringe to define the sentiment of all muslims. these protesters do not speak for all of them. >> right. this isn't necessarily an obama administration issue, is it? let's listen to condoleezza rice when she was secretary of state, her response on those danish cartoons you were speaking about. >> this has been a very difficult period of time for
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everybody. we certainly understand there is genuine outrage. there are people who were genuinely offended by the cartoons. i found them offensive. obviously there is a press freedom involved here but a press responsibility involved. now that said, whatever your views of this, the violence and going into the streets and burning embassies and killing innocent people is totally unacceptable. >> that seems to be exactly what you want a diplomat to say. you don't have a problem with that, do you? >> it's -- it's -- it's not that there's a problem with twinning those two ideas, that violent protests are bad, it's the idea that the u.s. government has to constantly explain that everything that's done in a free and open society is responsible somehow of the americans. this is never applied in the other sense. i think in some sense the idea that there is the sort of crisis management mode that happens every time these -- pretexts, it's giving basically a lot of
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power to what at least we all hope is a minority fringe view in the middle east. >> the fact that am general pe tray yas, when terry jones, the koran burning pastor in florida, petraeus was worried enough to call off jones to call off the koran burning. he called jones to stop showing this film. there is the military assessment that american lives are put at stake by this thing. and i think that sheds -- it doesn't take away the free speech concern but it adds another layer to it and takes you more into the when someone's yelling fire in a crowded movie theater and do american policy makers of both parties also act because they feel they have a responsibility to safeguard american lives. >> i don't know how comfortable i am with military personnel
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calling people saying what you should and shouldn't say. are we doing something wrong, phyllis, when we recognize other people's sensitivities? >> this was extraordinary. >> it's not helpful? >> what governor romney said actually was he was saying that the film and what it represents is american principles. he was saying that it's outrageous that the white house or the embassy is apologizing for american principles. as far as i could tell, they were apologizing, if you want to use that term, they weren't actually, they were explaining that it doesn't represent the government's position, this outrageous film which romney seems to think does represent american principle. >> objectively. if you asked him i'm sure he would say no. that's the problem with being sloppy on this stuff. >> what he talks about with both paul ryan and romney, they're both talking about when they say values, they're talking about ideas of freedom of speech, freedom of religion quite obviously, but it is insane to argue that a president romney
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would have dealt with this situation even one iota differently than president obama did. this is standard fare. this is scripted. we apologize for -- not even apologize, but we understand the grievances. we will not put up with violence. >> i don't think that's his -- >> we're going to take a break. we'll give you a chance to say that we can't say that when we return. we'll be right back. tap... pinch... and zoom... in your car. introducing the all-new cadillac xts with cue. ♪ don't worry. we haven't forgotten, you still like things to push. [ engine revs ] the all-new cadillac xts has arrived, and it's bringing the future forward.
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phyllis, you wanted to respond to the idea that romney would, i guess, basically would have followed more or less the same script as president obama. >> yes. i think that's way beyond what we know about a so-called president obama. i mean, when you have advisors like john bolton, like elliott cohn, these are extremists. the notion that they are only extreme during elections is just wrong. look at what john bolton did when he was at the united nations. it's a situation where
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politicians were just running for office and once they get into office they are accountable to the money behind their campaign. if you're accountable to the coke brothers, you're going to do one thing f. you're accountable to unions, you're going to do something else. i think that it's very dangerous to assume that, well, the presidency has this existence that has nothing to do with who's in the office and that they're all going to sort of do the right thing and have some long vision of what's really best for u.s. foreign policy. >> we certainly have a sense of who his advisors are, but we also know, i mean, as per his press conference the other day, he articulated his three foreign policy principles right at that press conference. >> a recognition that the principles america was based upon are not something that we shrink from or run from. the second is clarity in purpose. when we have a foreign policy objective we describe it honestly and clearly to the american people, to congress and
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to the people of the world. and, number three, is resolve in our might, that in those rare circumstances, those rare circumstances where we decide it's necessary for us to provide military might, that we do so with overwhelming force. >> confidence in our cause, clarity in our purpose, resolve in our might. principles for a sound foreign policy? >> you know, sam, i like puppies and kittens too. at one level it's hard to disagree with any of those. at another level they're kind of the perfect bumper stickers for what went wrong during eight years that the neocons had the rudder. this goes back to something important that phyllis said. mitt romney does have some sane moderate middle of the road realist advisors. they were complaining off the record to what a terrible set of decisions that romney made to the events in the middle east.
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what you see is it's time to stop talking about romney's advisors and say, look, he's not being advised by his advisors. he's being advised by his pollsters and by his base. it's time to stop kidding ourselves that there's anything else at play in how he's willing to talk about america. how he's willing to talk about americans before their bodies are even cold. >> i mean, that leaves us, eli, what is your sense? are we seeing romney's foreign policy or are we simply seeing romney's campaign? >> well, one of the reasons why i think that romney has articulated vague and nice sounding principles as opposed to various specific ideas in this campaign is because the republican base itself is very much divided on foreign policy between people who favored bush style interventionism and people who believe that the austerity measures that they demand for medicare and social security should apply to the military. that's a deep divide.
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there's a similar one in the democratic party although it would be on the terms of anti-imperialism versus liberal nationalism. in that sense the romney campaign has decided to largely air brush over those distinctions because the party is divided. >> so it's an open question as to how he's going to lead. we'll be right back and talk more about this. ♪ [ honk! ] ♪ [ honk! ] ♪ [ honk! ] ♪ [ male announcer ] now you'll know when to stop. [ honk! ] the all-new nissan altima with easy fill tire alert. [ honk! ] it's our most innovative altima ever. nissan. innovation that excites. ♪ nissan. innovation that excites. hor get the yard ready for cool energy bill weather?size? the answer? a lot less. the great american fix-up is going on now...
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that's why at devry university, we're teaming up with companies like cisco to help make sure everyone's ready with the know how we need for a new tomorrow. [ male announcer ] make sure america's ready. make sure you're ready. at ♪ good morning from new york. i'm sam seder in for chris hayes. heather hurlburt, reza asian, eli lake. eli, you were basically just pointing out that mitt romney is being very cautious as to really, i guess, take a specific stance on foreign policy because he's got two con stit two
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wednesday sis in his own party that seem to be quite at odds with each other. so where does this leave us, heather? i mean, theoretically part of presidential campaign is to hear ideas and to determine whether or not that's the type of leadership we want to invest in going forward. can we really -- can we really measure mitt romney's foreign policy when all we have is his desire to sort of jump into a -- what is -- could have been a very serious crisis and just put out a statement? >> let me tell you what else we don't have, sam, on afghanistan. we know he didn't talk about it in his convention speech. he's both said, yes, i support winding down the war. he's also said, no, i don't support withdrawing troops. it's hard to see how you do that if you don't withdraw troops. he's proposed to adding 100,000 troops and increasing the military budget. his advisors can't tell us what
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that would be used for which is a little scary. he's severely criticized the handling of iran but when you ask him what he would do specifically, can't name a single thing. has had almost nothing to say about the nato alliance. almost nothing to say about the european economic crisis. he would introduce sanctions on the trade sanctions in china. in his book, he says he's owes posed to it. when are the things he believes, i've got nothing for you. >> it's an appallingly poorly run campaign. my heart goes out to him a little bit. his original idea was do no harm. everybody is disappointed in obama. the economy is in the tank. just be the other guy, and that works for a while, but now we're two months away from the election and it's time to take a position on things. i understand what eli is saying. he's in a terrible position. he's got a deeply fractured
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political party that if he loses might really spell the end of the gop as we know it but, nevertheless, if he doesn't act boldly, if he doesn't take positions that might alienate somebody in his own party, the people in the middle won't take him seriously. >> there's no second principle, clarity and purpose. we're not seeing that. >> let's look at where there are some significant differences. i think there's some real dangers here that we are maybe glossing over a little bit. on the question of iran, there is a clear difference between the so called red lines of the obama administration and the red lines of mitt romney. i'll tell you what they are. he's gone -- >> george stephan nap poe louse. >> the overall position has been we will accept the israeli red lines which are the notion of nuclear capability on the part of iran. he's at times pulled back from that. that his advisors have gone out. i agree with eli it hasn't been
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consistent. >> his red lines were the weapon which is the exact red line of obama. >> his advisors came back after that again and said we would not allow nuclear capability. and that's a hugely different level of threat. there's a threat when you say red lines at all because it undermines the possibility of diplomacy, but when you -- >> why wouldn't it enhance the possibilities of diplomacy? >> among other things, the congress is making it very difficult to be real diplomacy. there haven't been real discussions, real diplomatic discussions yet. let me just say that the notion of having red lines is inherently dangerous in my view. but when you have a red line that says, we will prevent a nuclear weapon is one thing. when you say we will have -- we will use military force to prevent nuclear capability, the israeli position, that means today. that's arguably been reached today. that's a much more dangerous scenario here. that's a huge difference between the two campaigns. >> so the other key difference, i think, is, as you say, the
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administration has been fairly clear. the romney campaign has been all over the map. meanwhile, the security establishment in the u.s. and even the security establishment, we also saw scocoft, bra shin ski, they have said we have not had a serious enough discussion about costs and benefits. one of the costs is you lose the ability to marshall the international community behind you if you launch an attack. nobody in the romney campaign shows any awareness of wrestling with how hard this is. to go back to the question of what would president romney do and that to me is the question issue. >> what president obama is not doing and what i think he needs to do is get out in front of this debate and say, it's not about where is the red line, it's about the fact that all 16 of our intelligence agentagenci most of the israelis, all of ours agree on this. they don't have a nuclear weapon, is not building one and has not decided whether or not
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to build a nuclear weapon. when that's the case even talking about this only serves the interests of israel diverting attention. >> that's incredible. >> that's what they said in 2007 and 2011. >> i think that's a very curious interpretation of it. listen, everything that we know about the iranian program is because someone in the international community caught them. we know -- >> yeah, terrorists of the u.k. are the ones that, quote, caught them. >> how does that secure your point? >> let's let eli -- >> the iae's latest report has said they've doubled these admittedly crude p 1 centrifuges in an underground base. they have refused to agree to numerous requests from the international community to stop their enrichment. they have a missile program and they continue to work on this. what the nie and intelligence communities continue to believe is that there has not been a decision to take all of these
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components and turn them into a nuclear weapon, but that's very different than saying they don't have one and they won't build one. >> the larger issue here is where does foreign policy in the united states stand? i think that what you're seeing is a real backlash, not just from those on the left or the democrats, but even from those on the right about the notion that a foreign government like israel, even an ally of ours, can dictate to us what our foreign policy instruments should or should not be i think is rubbing people the wrong way. maybe for all the wrong reasons. >> i don't think that's what this is about. i think israel has a very different view of the threat. while the israeli security establishment is weighing a lot of different issues, including what it would do to the u.s./israel alliance, it's not that the israelis are saying, we need you to do this right now. it's saying, we're going to do it if you don't do it. that's what i think we're at right now. >> it's being enabled by our arms, our money.
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that $4.1 billion a year that we gave this year, $3.1 billion over every year for 10 years, we're talking about $30 billion of our tax money going directly to aid to israel. it's an existential threat. what it really is is a threat to the israeli nuclear monopoly that exists in the region when they are the only country in the region that has a weapon, not under iaea, not acknowledged, and where the u.s. refuses to acknowledge it. the effect is no one is talking to the israelis. we're seeing it for months. no one is talking to the israelis about settlement, about the continuing occupation, siege of gaza. none of these things are on the agenda because, oh, my god, would err' hearing israel thinks it's under existential threat. that's on its nuclear monopoly. >> to respond to what eli said, i think it's important that b.b. has made it clear, a hood barack
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himself, by himself a strike could at the very least perhaps slow down their nuclear progress. the only thing that would truly disrupt it is an american strike. b.b. has made it very clear in his actions and in his words what he wants is an american military attack. an israeli military attack is not going to do it. when he threatens an israeli military attack the purpose of that threat is to force obama into action, to force the american military into action. it's really quite remarkable that bebe or any foreign leader has so deliberately inserted himself into an american election the way that he has. >> i think that that's all spent. i just don't think that that's the case. >> we're going to talk more about this in the next segment because we're going to talk
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about bebe netanyahu is arriving in the united states either today or tomorrow and will be on ""meet the press."" we're going to follow up more on this because he's certainly been in the news and this has also involved the presidential campaign with mitt romney. i want to say, heather hurlburt, executive director of the national security network, thanks for being here. we will be right back and talk more about israel and romney and the presidential campaign. ls ine world... see they all have something very interesting in common. they have teachers... ...with a deeper knowledge of their subjects. as a result, their students achieve at a higher level. let's develop more stars in education. let's invest in our teachers... they can inspire our students. let's solve this. let's compare. germ party! eww! now the colgate total mouth.
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we're discussing romney's position on the standoff over iran's nuclear program. and romney has promised that as president he would seriously consider military action if iran does not immediately stop enriching eye rain yum. he's claimed that if president obama is re-elected, quote, iran will have a nuclear weapon. they've been decidedly more
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cautious implementing harsh economic sanctions but refusing to set a time line on iran's nuclear facilities. that approach resulted in a major flairup between united states and israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu. hillary clinton reiterated the obama administration's commitment to a peaceful settlement in an interview with bloomberg radio. we're not setting deadlines, we're convinced that we have more time to focus on these sanctions to do everything we can to bring iran to a good-faith negotiation. >> netanyahu who has demanded that the u.s. set a time line for a military strike against iran responded to some of his harshest criticism of the obama administration to date. >> the world tells israel, wait, there's still time. and i say, wait for what?
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wait until when? those in the international community who refuse to put red lines before iran don't have a moral right to place a red light before israel. >> as "the new york times" reported yesterday, obama personally rebuffed netanyahu's call for a red line with a phone call with the israeli premiere on tuesday. in an interview on thursday with abc, romney criticized obama's iran policy but admitted that as president his red line would be the same as president obama's. >> my red line is iran may not have a nuclear weapon. it is inappropriate for them to have the capacity to terrorize the world. >> but your red line going forward is the same? >> yes. >> joining us now is hooman majd. welcome, hooman. i want to bring in daniel levy, a senior research fellow at the new american foundations middle
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east task force and an advisor to the middle east. welcome, daniel. >> hi, sam. >> daniel, let's start with you. in israel are there politics that are taking place in israel that is sort of pressuring netanyahu to come out and really take on, i guess, secretary of state clinton's sort of refusal to put down a red line or is this -- in other words, is he -- he seems to be sort of flanked on both sides now. >> i think it's very important for your viewers to know that there is not pressure in israel nor has there been to take a hard line and to preemptively launch a solo military strike. the only protests there have been throughout the iran/israel
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situation have actually been in the opposite direction. not massive protests, they've been against military action. this is very top driven. part of it one can understand. it's quite clear what netanyahu's preference is in the american election. it's clear that he wants the -- this to be a distraction and for the palestinian issue to go away. he clearly wants to push the americans as close as possible to articulating positions and doing things in terms of a military positioning in the gulf. it will make a clash more likely. at some level, it's difficult not to go there to ask questions about what the former head of the shinbat, one of israel's security agencies calls netanyahu messyism. there is a sense that perhaps netanyahu sees his role in this world in the sweep of jewish history as to attack iran, but that cuts against everything we know about netanyahu as a risk
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averse politician who doesn't like making decisions and who could well lose politically because what he's doing right now is beginning to have a cost in domestic political terms for netanyahu because people are seriously questioning is this guy fit to govern and fit to manage the u.s./israel relationship. >> in fact, we're starting to see evidence of -- you're saying this is a top down driven in israel, and we had minister a hood barack wrote -- he was quoted as saying, do not forget that the u.s. is israel's main ally. we have to remember the importance of our partnership with the u.s. we should do everything possible not to harm it. this is coming off of what i believe was barak's essentially backing off the notion of a unilateral strike.
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danie daniel,, is netanyahu's coming out and sort of rebuffing secretary of state clinton, is that in response to sort of losing support amongst the political elite in israel? >> i think netanyahu has gotten to a position where he feels he has to double down, which is what i think we're seeing in significant measure. he would have liked to have been able to claim, i think, that whatever next happens in terms of sanctioning going forward, in terms of language becoming more harsh, that this is down to him continuing to make credible and real the possibility of an israeli strike. and he will then turn to the former mossad heads or even to his own defense minister and say, you see, if we hadn't of stuck with my approach we wouldn't have gotten these developments moving forward. but he's also backing himself into a corner in terms of the boy crying wolf, and i think his
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defense minister, ehud barak that you had it was time to climb down from the ladder. barak said, look, i've seen the american plans for a possible strike. the deputy chair of the joint chiefs was just over here. i think now we can be a little more calm in knowing that america is serious. netanyahu chose not to use that as an opportunity for climbing down the ladder. that has to do with domestic politics. that has to do with his view of american politics. don't forget that i think netanyahu in a significant way also thinks even if obama wins the elections, i can stare him down. he was caught on video, you know, after his first term of prime minister saying america is an easy thing to lead by the nose i think is the right translation. i think netanyahu may have good reason for thinking this, feels that the united states president even if re-elected will not be willing to be in an ongoing standoff with the israeli prime minister and that he can put
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into play in obama's backyard a standoff. many israelis are deeply income fosht tabl with it but it makes sense. >> i want to thank daniel levy for joining us this morning. thank you, daniel. i appreciate it. >> thank you, sam, and to your guests. >> we're going to take a break and we'll come back and we'll allow you guys to answer that question, and particularly after president obama has rebuffed, i guess, benjamin netanyahu's rebuffing of secretary of state. we'll see if you think that netanyahu still feels that same way about leading america by the nose. copd makes it hard to breathe,
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embrolio between benjamin netanyahu and leaders of the obama administration and there may be some type of -- maybe not a turning point in the mind of netanyahu about his capacity to lead the american administration, but let's just talk just briefly of what mitt romney would do in terms of the israeli palestinian conflict which is a pretty stunning, i guess, outsourcing of foreign policy. here he is at the iowa republican presidential debate in 2011. >> i've also known bebe netanyahu for a long time. we've worked together. i said, would it help if i said this? what would you like me to do? >> reza, does that give you confidence? >> no. >> will president romney call up every foreign leader and ask him what he's supposed to say? >> talking points from bebe.
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i think it's important to mention that in the middle east and particularly in countries like iran which don't have good relationships with the united states. they already think the white house calls whoever is the prime minister of israel. certainly the egyptians think that. a lot of the egyptians think that. people across north africa and think that israel runs our foreign policy. would be president romney said, at least to a large degree. so i think, yeah, it's something that is a little scary. i think obama has demonstrated at least this week that he's not that kind of president and i think that probably resonates quite a bit in the middle east. i think it probably gains him some measure of sympathy among the people who are already against american foreign policy saying, wait a second, no, we don't set red lines. by the way, as everybody here has mentioned, there already is
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a red line for iran. they know that that red line is there. iran's response to that red line is we're not building weapons so what's the problem. you know, i'm not saying that they're right, but i'm just saying that's been their response. certainly i think it's true what hillary says and what obama has said, that there is plenty of time. i know netanyahu said wait for what? wait for there to be a point at which there is no more time to stop iran from having a nuclear weapon. the whole idea, phil keller wrote about this in "the new york times" this week, a very good op ed about this issue of going to war with iran. let's think about it. even if iran decided tomorrow to build a nuclear weapon, the only way that we could actually prevent them from doing that, actually prevent them from doing it is a ground invasion. let's be honest about this. there is no way to prevent iran if they make that decision to build a weapon, at this point that we can stop it.
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we can't stop it with a strike. we can delay it. even the united states can't stop it. we can do it by changing the regime and installing a puppet government there. i don't know if that will work. that's probably the minimum that would be required. nobody wants to talk about that. they want to talk about surgical military strikes. they don't want to talk about the number of people who are going to die. when i'm in iran and have been there, i've talked to people who are anti-regime people who have been in jail and have been tore toured and they say, if there is an attack, we'll fight for iran. it's not as simple as we think. let's bomb the facilities and we'll be okay. i think it's a much larger discussion. >> eli, when you hear -- i know this is obviously a campaign, but when you hear president romney -- would be president romney saying i'm just going to call up and find out what he would like me to say, is that problematic? >> i think he's basically saying that israel is an ally. he would consult as obama consults with other u.s. allies.
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how's that any different than when obama talks about his fondness for turkey or bush has talked about his fondness for tony blair. >> it's weird. >> it's very strange. >> a little different. >> it plays into a kind of paranoid fiction that many elites unfortunately in the middle east believe. as our friend says just now, that there is some sort of relationship of a wag the dog where the israelis are dictating u.s. foreign policy or controlling u.s. foreign policy. sadly we've seen in recent years some people in the u.s. media and others echo this kind of thing. i just think that that's not how the world works. >> we've talked about it. >> that's something more about the hussein theory. >> we talked about that clip of netanyahu saying that he thought that he was wagging the dog a little bit. let me ask you this. do you think netanyahu thinks that that dynamic is changing? in other words, what we're watching this week where he's saying that we're running out of time, do you think that he's
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talking necessarily about the window for a strike against iran in his mind is closing or is it that his opportunity too -- maybe with the election and the way that the election is heading, that his opportunity to get america on board with that is closing? >> i think it's pretty clear. prime minister netanyahu does not believe barack obama when he says he will prevent iran from getting a nuclear weapon. he thinks that obama's real policy in a second term would be containment and he thinks that that's something israel can't live with. i have to say, i think all of these is rally national security experts that are dissidents against netanyahu's policy, i don't think they could live with that either. >> can i just come back to this question of who makes u.s. foreign policy? i don't think israel makes foreign policy. i think the u.s. does. since the days of the cold war they've looked at israel as a crucial strategic not just ally, arm of u.s. policy. and then we lost it as a
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strategic asset with the end of the cold war. for about ten years israel -- there was a big debate about is israel now maybe even not only an ally, not only an asset but it's a problem for us during the first gulf war in 1991. we saw george bush 1st being willing to make a challenge to u.s. support for settle 789s. all of a sudden after september 11th israel is back as a strategic ally. you have a lobby which is very strategic. it doesn't make the policy. based on this question of the intersection of the interests and work of the lobby and the strategic views of the pentagon of israel as the strategic -- >> can i say? i want to respond to that. >> i'm going to give you a chance to respond. >> let me nish. >> i'll give you a chance to respond to that, eli, and a chance for you to finish. we'll be back after the hard break.
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okay. so, phyllis, why don't you finish your point about the relationship between israel -- >> we heard, sam, last year, there was a moment about how we were hearing about how the u.s. is criticizing the u.s. too much. we heard from the republicans that the obama administration is throwing israel under the bus. let's look at what really happened. we didn't see even any pressure around settlements. we heard a series of requests. please stop building settlements. answer, no. pressure would have looked like, stop building settlements, it's illegal. answer to that, you are an independent country, you can do what you want. you know the $4 billion we're giving you, it was only $3.1 billion at that time. you know how we protect you in the u.s. with all of the resolutions that are passed, no israeli officials are ever held accountable for potential war crimes, we're not doing that anymore. that's what pressure looks like. we haven't seen it. that's not because the israelis
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say it, it's because that's been u.s. policy with both parties in power for way too long. when we see as we were hearing, in the middle east when people see what the u.s. did, for example, when the palestinians were accepted as a member of unesco and the u.s. response is to cut $70 billion. >> no, $70 million. >> $70 million from the unesco budget that goes to tsunami warnings, people are saying, why would they do that? >> eli, respond to that. do you think -- >> well, very briefly, then i want to get to more of the iran point about israel. the first year netanyahu did agree to a settlement freeze there was a disagreement about whether it applied to easter rus is a lem. >> it didn't. >> i'm thinking there had been some efforts to give a speech. he did give a speech at berlon university at the urging of president obama. >> hold on a second. before we get to iran. do you think that the united states, particularly under the
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obama administration, has been pressuring israel more on things like settlements than in the past? i mean, do you really think there's within an increase in sort of leverage here? >> i would say that you started to see it under the bush administration with colin powell and george w. bush at the u.n. called for a palestinian state. you've seen evolution of at least the level of official that would express concerns about settlements. for many years it would be something that would be done in a press release under president obama. the president of the united states articulates it himself. >> there's been an evolution? >> phyllis bennis is correct in the sense that there hasn't been, you know, threats of the fundamentals of the relationship. there's a strategic reason for that. everybody knows israel -- america is israel's most important friend and that how the united states treats its allies is observed by everybody else about whether it's going to be okay. >> 25% of our entire foreign aid
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budget going to the 23rd wealthiest country. >> you don't like israel. i'm just saying. >> tax money. >> fair enough. >> we're not going to give 25% to all of our friends. the example is -- >> i don't think the 5id -- >> let reza join in. >> there's a larger philosophical issue here. whether america's interests in the region are in alliance with israel's. you hear this from politicians. well, they're not the same. our interests are actually sometimes divergent. >> i agree with that. >> iran is a perfect example of that. >> i don't know about that. >> it is in israel's interests to cease all uranium enrichment in iran, full stop. that will never happen and it is not going to be obama policy because it's a failed start. we're talking about negotiations, netanyahu can say from his position that negotiations have led nowhere because iran is still enriching
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uranium. fact, truex september that iran is going to continue enriching uranium regardless of whatever the outcome of a negotiation is. president obama, who's running for office, can't negotiate with that postulate. he can't begin by saying, number one, yes, you have a right to enrich uranium. he has to wait until the elections are over. there's this weird sort of pause when it comes to iran. the pause is a perfect way of putting this. what obama is saying there's time, there's time, there's time. he's saying to really do something about iran's nuclear program i'm going to have to say things and sacrifice things that will hurt me politically and i will not do that until the elections are over. >> we'll take a break and we'll pick it up from there. get two times the points on dining in restaurants, with chase sapphire preferred. [ "human" by the human league playing ] humans.
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we mean well, but we're imperfect creatures living in a beautifully imperfect world. >> we'll take a break and we'll we're at our best. see how at liberty mutual insurance -- responsibility. what's your policy?
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i get all my friends' pics as soon as they take them. really? you just missed an awesome dance off between the dads. oh... wow! (laughing) you just missed the cake fight. seriously? everyone's taking pictures like they're paparazzi. are we missing that? we're not, check it out. aww, yeah, haha. excuse me. vo: get all your friends' photos automatically with share shot on the galaxy s3. hey! first dance! are you kidding me??? why not get buried in something other than work? get two times the points on travel, with chase sapphire preferred. so when we broke, reza was making the point that president obama's restricted by the campaign in terms of what he can say in addressing iran.
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>> what he can do, actually. i mean, let's -- netanyahu is right about one thing, that negotiations and diplomacy haven't worked. the reason they haven't worked, they don't exist. they haven't existed. what has happened in the last year is that the united states has made offers to iran that have been take it or leave it offers. that would have been impossible, and i think the obama administration knew ahead of time because the russians told them, the turnings told them, other people told them that these demands won't work unless there's relief elsewhere like on the sanctions. the u.s. says no. the iranians know this too. they're waiting for the election to be over. they're not stupid. we understand and know what the situation is for obama. for them, they're saying we don't really care who's the president. we know nothing will happen until then. we have no incentive to do anything right now. the only thing they have done and it's significant, i guess, been pointed out in the press. some of that 20% enriched uranium has been converted to
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fuel plates which can't then be reconverted or reprocessed into fuel. what they're doing is sitting there with this, you know, status quo not increasing -- increasing the number of centrifuges but not actually running them. trying to leave it as it is, you know, try to play out the sanctioning until november and then see if there's going to be real offers then. >> the first year of obama's administration he wrote personal letters to the supreme leader and he announced that there would be a pause to any further sanctions. he said that america and under him would be interested in discussions and the iranians responded by stealing an election that was won by their more democratic opposition, murdering lots of protesters, and then concealing and underground facility known as fordo that was smoked out by u.s. intilly against of the that's how the iranians responded. the issue is not -- >> that's a way of putting it. >> you think that's directly in response? >> i'm saying that the iranians have --
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>> that's preposterous, eli. >> how is it? >> very simplistic way of looking at it. >> correct way. >> no. you can actually go look at the quotes. the supreme leader gave a speech when obama was elected saying, we think his words are great. we understand his words, but now we'd like to see some action. >> action. >> if you're going to say president obama writing this letter is -- causes the -- >> i didn't say that. i didn't say that. i'm trying to make a point is that there have been good faith efforts under lots of presidents to try to reach a deal with these people. they've been a radical revolutionary fanatic that are not interested in an entante. i think that's a fiction. there have been so many efforts. >> no, there haven't. >> and trying to reason with them. they always say no. >> what about 2003. >> what about 2003? what about it? >> what about the offers that were made? >> are you talking about the facts? >> i happen to know the person who was the author of it who is a close associate of the supreme leader. that was a real offer.
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>> not according to dick arm ma taj. >> if you want to believe him. >> by the way, if that was a real offer, then why did they continue to send -- >> hold on. >> they're at war. >> iran -- >> i don't buy it. i don't buy it. it serves its own interests. those interests are absolutely against america's interests. and so when iran supports hezbollah or continues movement on its nuclear ambitions, we see that as a direct attack against us when in reality it's just them supporting their own national security interests which is what they're going to do. if we're going to have a good faith negotiation, look, iran has lied, cheated, let's not pretend otherwise, it has not met its international obligations. >> nor has the u.s. on nuclear weapons, let's be clear. >> the larger issue is that there is a framework forgive and take. there is a framework for a pause in nuclear enrichment or a
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reducing of it to 5% or 3.5% in exchange for a slow removal of sanctions. that is something that both the obama administration and the iranian government have given positive signals to, but it ain't gonna happen until the elections are over. >> that's where we're going to have to end it. so what do we know now that we didn't know last week? my answers and the panel's after this. so you brushed with colgate total and you didn't. let's compare. germ party! eww! now the colgate total mouth.
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iranian government have given
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. . so what do we know now that we didn't know last week? we know voters rights groups in florida won a partial victory from the florida department of state agreed to inform 2,625 citizens who were mistakenly removed from the voter's roles that they may vote in the november election. although republican governor, rick scott, has spent months
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warning about massive voter fraud, florida has caught and charged and convicted only one person of the crime, canadian named joseph seaver, who pleaded guiltfy to obtaining a firearms license by falsely claiming he was a u.s. citizen. unless it can be moved in court that florida broke the federal law within 90 days of a federal election, governor scott intends to continue his crusade against this imaginary threat up until election day. we know democracy is under attack not only when it comes to who is allowed to vote but also what they are allowed to vote for. although citizens in orange county gathered and verified the requisite 50,000 signatures to get earned sick leave on the ballot, we know the orange county commission voted unanimously to delay consideration of the measure after lobbyists for multibillion dollar corporations like disney weighed in. we know the commissioner said they need to delay until october 16th to find a less confusing
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ballot title. in summary, almost a month past the deadline tore printing the ballot. even though the orlando sentinel editorial board agrees with critics, it called the commission maneuver a part of a, quote, bag of dirty tricks," that the commissioners had broken faith with county voters. is it any wonder so many are cynical about their government? we know the strike by 29,000 public school teachers and support staff kept students out of school this week. we know despite the havoc it create, 55% of voting households and 66% of parents of public school students support the strike. we know the teacher's union and rahm emanuel continued to negotiate on friday without reaching a deal. we know so far, public school parents have the teacher's backs. finally, we know that while vice president presidential nominee paul ryan tries to fire up the republican base for mitt romney, polls show that his congressional opponent, former
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"up" guest rob zurbin is gaining on him. his campaign shows that after voters were read a profile statement, he was only 8 points behind ryan 39% and 11% remain undecided. he is a chef and former business owner, casting ryan as an out of touch washington insider who never had any real world experience running a business. if voters want real change, we know they are going to have to pay as much attention to key down ballot races as they are paying to the presidential campaign. i want to find out what my guests know now that they have what they didn't know when the week began. let's start with you hooman. >> we always knew that mitt romney was pretty tone death when it came to foreign policy. now, we know he is incredibly
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insensitive when it came to what happened in egypt. i think that's something that will resonate with voters over time. his statement about the protests and the deaths of the american diplomates shows that he is not prepared to take that 3:00 a.m. call. >> reza? >> i will take max fisher from the atlantic for this. what we know is that even though we keep talking about the middle east as the muslim world that of the top five most populist countries in the world, only one of them is in the middle east. and, in truth, when we talk about the 21st century and the muslims, we are going to be talking increasingly about indonesia and south asia and turkey. this is where the future of islam rests.
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this is where the protests were the most peaceful. >> we know that the discourse on how they see the israeli palestinian conflict continues to change. we know that this week when we saw at the dnc. the response of what was claimed to be a two-thirds vote in sfoert of moving the embassy to jerusalem. there was a great deal of anger on the floor so that the grassroots of the democratic party itself is joining that much wider shift in public discourse on this question. >> eli? >> we know from the unauthorized navy s.e.a.l. book about the bin laden raid that bin laden was found by a woman from the cia known as jen. we know from a feature story i have in news week coming up on monday that women, more often than not, tend to be what are known as targeting analysts, who
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often find the location of senior terrorists and other narco traffickers that are tr captured or killed by navy s.e.a.l.s. >> my thanks to you all. thanks for getting up with us. thank you for getting up with "up." coming up next, melissa harris perry. new polls and other signs point to a potential big win for president obama. the coordinated effort underway to intimidate voters at the ballot box could be the undoing of democrats. melissa has the author of a new report with details on melissa hairy-perry coming up next. we will see you right here tomorrow at 8:00. i'm sam cedar from the majority report in for chris
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